Soul Fertilizer – A Haibun and Running Update

The packed, gravel path crunches like my favorite candy bar beneath my feet.  The smell is not delicious chocolate but cow patties, liquified and repurposed. The steam from this concoction rises from the turned earth like the steam from my body on this 6 mile run. The smells are similar but mine reeks of determination and accomplishment. Each run is risky – maybe if I was more consistent, I would know what to expect, I would know that I wouldn’t fail, that I would keep going and not give up.  But I don’t, except for today – today, my run wasn’t shit, but it did fertilize my soul.

Risk in every step

But I’m not going gently

In that fading light

This haibun was written for Patrick’s Pic and a Word Challenge #183 – Risk and also incorporates Beth’s Tuesday Writing Prompt at the Go Dog Go Cafe to use the phrase “fading light”.

I haven’t done an update on my training for the Niagara Falls International Women’s Half Marathon that I am training for – maybe it’s because I really haven’t been consistent with my training at all. With sick kids and spring break and other obligations, running has definitely taken a back seat except for this past weekend when I was able to get a run in with a local friend of mine who is also part of Moms RUN this Town.

Danielle was one of the first running moms I met when we moved to PA. She recently had an adorable baby boy and is training for the same half marathon in Niagara as I am (she was the one who actually told me about this race). Danielle is one of the most kind, energetic and determined women that I have met here.  Being a local, she taught me so much about this area (like how to pronounce certain words, introducing me to the local farmers’ market) when I first arrived.  Running with Danielle is always fun and this run was no exception. We were even able to see the Easter Bunny at the end of our run!

After this spring break week, I am getting back into a regular schedule with running so be ready for more sweaty pictures of me!

©️ iido 2019

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The Girls at Sunrise – A Haibun

We’re laying on top of the van under a scratchy blanket with What’s His Name. The cold fingertips of morning mist drag across our skin, weighing down the beads around us with condensation.

The sun makes it slow appearance, a disapproving gaze covering The Big Easy as well as the skyline of New Orleans. We’re hoping the sun’s warmth forgives and forgets like we’ve forgotten where the blue top with embroidered flowers went.

Puckered flesh exchanged
Innocence for plastic beads
At sunrise – regret

*****

For Patrick’s Pic and a Word Challenge #178 – Sunrise. Also incorporating last week’s dVerse Poetics theme: Mardi Gras.

©️ iido 2019

March Madness – A Haibun

It is March and I am Mad. The sky is a vibrant electric blue. The clouds are soft cotton pillows. The sun is bright but not warm enough to melt the recent snow. It is a fake spring.

But when a gentle wind blows, soothing my brow with the feel of soft yellow daffodils and hot magenta tulips, I release the anger and betrayal.

Disappointment healed

By springs flowers marching on

The promise of hope


Another coming together of prompts! Merrill at dVerse requested a Haibun about “March Madness” while Jamie Dedes’ Wednesday Writing Prompt asked: How does nature inspire joy in you, inspire your creativity and perhaps even your sense of peace? For me, the symptoms of spring sparks joy however where I am now, spring has been a tease – snowing one day then 60 degree temperatures the next. It is enough to drive one mad!

©️ iido 2019

Ambition – A Haibun

Does the caterpillar look in the sky and seeing a bird strive to soar upon rainbow hues wings? Does she eat and eat out of envy and frustration? Does she hide away in her chrysalis, depressed that she hasn’t reached her full potential?

No, the ambition of a caterpillar lies in her ability to become her true self. The hard work is being satisfied and doing her best with each stage of life, so that when metamorphosis happens, she is ready in mind, body and soul.

Ambition becomes

Wings unfurled, colors revealed

The truth of hard work

Jamie, The Poet by Day, challenged us to write a poem about ambition. I had many thoughts about this but was inspired by a visit to a butterfly garden yesterday. Humans ambition has both positive and negative aspects of it but for animals, ambition or that strive to be the best seems to be ingrained. Maybe this is another aspect that sets humans apart from other animals.

Since I myself am not a very ambitious person, writing about it was somewhat of a difficult task. True, I have hopes and wants but I am content with whatever comes my way. It’s not so much that I don’t strive or that I don’t work hard (because I do!) but that drive towards a goal is not a focus in my life. While this drives my partner nuts (not to mention my parents when I was growing up), my ambitious drive is just not that strong. And I’m ok with that!

Thus, this totally not ambitious Haibun about ambition.

©️ iido 2019

January – A Haibun

January sighs with dreary days covered with wet grey skies. It’s an in between time – the rush of people, things and holiday tradition has passed but the sweet smell and green tints of spring are still a long way away. January helps us practice the hopeful anticipation that seeds have mastered.

January whispers so you can for hide and sleep without guilt, hibernating like wise bears not scampering about like silly squirrels. The search should be for food for your mind and soul, and can be found through sleepy reflections and cozy inquiries.

January skies

Waiting to uncover spring

Reflect sleepy thoughts

This Haibun was written for dVerse 1st Haibun Monday of 2019 – theme: January.

Yes, I know it’s Wednesday but I’ve realized I am not fast poetry thinker or writer. It takes me a while to formulate my thoughts and craft my words. But once that’s done, the poem springs from my head triumphantly like Athena from Zeus’.

January always seems like a hard month. There is the let down (whether is release or relief) from the holiday hype of December and New Year’s Day but it’s still too far away from March and the warm of spring. It also doesn’t have a claim to fame like February which is a short month full of hearts and candy love. Hopefully, reading all these haibuns about January will give new perspective on this month.

©️ iido 2019

Bed and Breakfast – A Haibun

The blue sky smelled of manure. Even the allure of coffee and raw milk, homemade bread with rhubarb jam and omelets plucked from their mother just that morning couldn’t overcome the scent that distinctly said, “You’re on a working farm.”

The distinct sound of a tractor pulled up to the farmhouse door. The farmer offered us a hay ride around the farm and explained the difference between hay and straw, silo versus barn. The farmer named each machine and it’s purpose, but not the animals.

That night, I briefly wondered if the chicken that gave her life for our pot pie dinner also sacrificed her progeny for our breakfast. And if the rooster that would wake us in the morning, knew what happened to his family.

Plastic and foam trays

Deception and protection

Farmers eat the truth

Yes, that’s me on a tractor – picture courtesy of one of my sorority sisters who posted some “throwback pictures” of a reunion we had a bed and breakfast in the Pennsylvania countryside a few years after we graduated college. I don’t think the tractor was actually moving for the picture, but it was a first for this city girl!

Coincidentally, Jamie Dedes’ Wednesday Writing prompt requested: This week share poem/s out of your own nostalgia, experience, impressions, gratitude, concerns, or convictions about farms, farming, or farm policy. Despite now living in “farm country”, I still don’t know about farming although I do appreciate the numerous farmers markets in our area.

One thing I do know: I am very appreciative of the men and women who work on farms because I know I don’t have the constitution or inclination to grow things or kill things to eat. Maybe because living in cities, I was never exposed to that reality and thus my aversion to being close to the true source of what I/we eat. Food came in a package and didn’t have faces. Maybe if more people were aware of the reality of farming, there would be less food waste and a better understanding of the need to conserve and protect the environment/nature and animals as finite resources. But what do I know…I’m just a city girl…

©️ iido 2018

No Need to Wait – A Haibun

Raindrops on my window pane remember another time, another storm, another breath of waiting. It was still new and exciting back then. Now, it’s just worrisome as time goes faster and faster.

Waiting for that look

When you turn your head and wave

Not today – you’ve grown

Imelda at dVerse hosted Haibun Monday with the theme: Waiting. As a mom, I spend a lot of time waiting for my kids – to get ready in the morning, to get them from school, to do their chores; also waiting while they are at their numerous after school activities. I usually try to catch up on correspondence during those few minutes or use that time to type out thoughts for a poem. Sometimes, I just sit and listen to music or to the silence before the kids fill the space.

The picture above is of my older daughter doing a ropes course. See her, on the right, in the trees? Such a brave girl! I realize as they get older, they won’t need me to wait for them anymore. They might go with their friends or (gasp!) be able to drive themselves to/from school, activities. The nine months of waiting for them seemed to last forever and now the time is going too fast! Soon, I will no longer need to wait.

©️ iido 2018